Kuwait’s ruler dissolved parliament on Tuesday and called for an election, state media said. The government was forced to resign last month in one of the deepest political crises in the oil-exporting state and the emir said this crisis was threatening the country’s interests.
Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah gave no date for the election but under the constitution it must be held within 60 days of parliament’s dissolution. The emir said in a decree read out on state television that the decision to dissolve parliament came after it became difficult to achieve progress. “This required going back to the nation to choose its representatives in order to overcome present difficulties,” the decree said.
The OPEC-member has been locked in a long-running political battle between the government, dominated by the ruling al Sabah family, and the 50-member elected parliament. The crisis mainly revolved around allegations by opposition parliament members against former prime minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah, a nephew of the emir, of mismanagement and corruption — charges which he denied.
“I think it (parliament’s dissolution) will at least open up a chance of having a new beginning with a new chance of cooperation — that’s a possibility,” said Ghanem al-Najar, professor of political science at Kuwait University.
“If the prime minister and the new government take into consideration the resentment and the dissatisfaction within the public sphere — I’m sure this is going to move forward.”